Face retouch with texture preservation

In this Photoshop tutorial, you’ll learn how to make skin retouching professionals. Skin will look healthy without plastic effect or blur.

1. Open the photo in Photoshop. In this tutorial, try using high resolution images where you can see the skin texture.

2. Duplicate the layer and paste it into the group. To do this, press Ctrl + J to duplicate the layer, and then Ctrl + G to place the new layer in the group. The group is called “Airbrush” and the layer is “Blur”.

The “Blur” layer will be used to blur the skin. Then, we will add another layer to restore the natural texture of the skin.

3. Select the “Blur” layer. To blur this layer, use the Blur filter on the surface. This filter is similar to Gaussian Blur, the difference is that it leaves the borders more detailed. We need to blur the layer so that the skin is smoothed, but without oiled edges.

4. This is how my image looks after applying the Blur over the surface filter. Your image should look like mine, the details of the eyes should not be affected.

5. Create a new layer and place it above the blur layer. Name this layer “Texture” and change the blending mode to Hard light (Hard Light). This layer will be used to add texture to the skin, as well as adjust the tonality of the skin.

6. The texture created in this layer will practically not be visible on the final image. It can be seen, if only to apply a large increase. But despite this, the skin will not look too smooth or as if made of plastic.

Below is an example of the result.

7. Make sure you have the “Texture” layer selected. Press Shift + F5 or go to menu. Editing> Fill (Edit – Fill). Set the Fill tool settings as in the image below.

8. Next, go to the menu. Filter> Noise. This will add some noise to the image, thus avoiding the “plastic skin effect”. After applying the filter, the image may look too harsh, but in the next step we will fix this by applying the Gaussian Blur filter.

9. Go to the menu Filter> Blur> Gaussian Blur. Blur radius set 1 pixel.

10. Now we take a color sample from this layer. First select the eyedropper tool. . Choose a sample of skin color that you think is more suitable, you may not be very accurate, as we will continue to customize the color further in the lesson. In the color palette, click on the small triangle in the circle and select the HSB model in the pop-up menu. We need to see HSB values ​​for the next step.

11. Open the panel Hue / saturation pressing Ctrl + U. Check the Tint box and check the parameters to match the HSB parameters from the upper step.

12. Select the “Airbrush” group in the layers panel. Then go to the menu. Layer> Mask Layer> Hide All (Layer – Layer mask – Hide all). Thus, we will create a layer mask filled with black color that will hide the entire group. In this layer mask we will draw the areas in which we want to add retouch.

13. And now, press D on the keyboard to set the default background color to black and white. Select the Brush tool and with the following settings.

Enlarge the image to 100% and color the skin. Do not worry if your skin tone seems wrong. This is because we did not select the correct color when we used Hue / Saturation with a hue on the Texture layer, since this is immediately very difficult to do. We will come to the correct result later. Use the following hotkeys to change the brush size and hardness:
• Decrease brush size: [
• Increase brush size:]
• Reduce the softness of the brush by 25%: Shift + [
• Increase brush softness by 25%: Shift +]

In the places where you painted over your skin, your mask should have areas of white and your skin look smooth.

Now we are going to fix the skin color, as we said earlier in this lesson. Select the “Texture” layer and press Ctrl + U. Change the settings to get a natural skin tone.

In the “Color tone” settings are usually correct. I increased it by 10 units, adding a yellow tint, thereby reducing the red areas.
Saturation settings typically have to be significantly reduced. Adjust this parameter until the skin tone looks natural, but not too pale.
“Brightness” on the contrary, requires minor changes, when you adjust it, you will see how sensitive this parameter is. If this parameter is configured correctly, the image will look more natural.

Now restore the details of the skin, go to the menu Image> External channel (Image – Apply Image). In the window that appears, set the following settings.

We added the data of the red channel, because in it the skin looks more perfect. In the picture below you can see the differences in channels.

Final results.
Here you see the final result after applying the airbrush technique.

When zooming in, you will notice that small skin bumps are still visible. Even at the bottom right image, the result looks natural due to the Texture layer, without this layer the image would look like a solid color without noise.

Thanks for attention!

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